Benchmark:Gary Lamb Music Library


As Mellow as You Wanna Be



Gary Lamb Music Library (10-Pack)

($250)

Royalty Free Music

7051 Hwy 70 South

Nashville, TN 37221

(800) 772-7701

www.royaltyfree.com



Music adds emotion to your videos. With the right music, the same shot of a man walking down the street can make the viewer feel happy, sad, anxious or inspired. As such, music is a powerful tool for the video editor. But for video editors who charge money for their videos, they can’t just use anything they like. To use a piece of music in a video production, the producer needs to secure the legal right to reproduce the song. (For more on copyright, see Shoot With Caution: Video, the Law and You by Jim Mikles in our January 1999 issue.)

Any editor who plans to sell or broadcast a video should have a collection of royalty-free music to use in those video productions. The Gary Lamb music library is a collection of thoughtful, well-produced instrumentals available for royalty-free use in video productions. While the music is available to video editors at all experience levels, the Gary Lamb collection will likely appeal to those more advanced producers who shoot and sell wedding, anniversary and/or nature videos.


Nice Package, Good Value

At face value, the 10-disk collection is a bargain compared with other buyout libraries. The package we reviewed included 10 compact discs with cuts ranging from about two-and-a-half minutes to nearly eight minutes in length. Each of the disks is titled and appears to be labeled for individual sale (the disks are individually shrink-wrapped). The 10-pack includes Gary’s CDs entitled Winter Dreams, Twelve Promises, A Walk in the Garden, Watching the Night Fall, Imaginations, Distant Fields, Love Themes, When East Meets West, Angel and Language of Love.

The average selection on each of the 10 disks is between four and five minutes long. With a list price of $250, you get 10 disks for about $25 each. (Other royalty-free libraries can cost you $50 for a single disk.) Each of the 10 CDs has an average of 10 songs, providing the buyer with a total selection of 100 original compositions. If you do the math, that’s just $2.50 per song. The set grants unlimited rights for the lifetime of the buyer. When you look at the numbers, this collection is a bargain, but it may not be a good investment for every video editor.

If a 10-CD set of music in this genre is more than you need, Gary Lamb also offers a 3-disk set. The 3-pack includes Love Themes, Distant Fields and Imaginations and sells for $96. Individual CDs can be purchased for $29.95 with the same unlimited copyright permissions.


Wait a Second

It is worth noting that these same CDs can be purchased individually from www.garylamb.com for as little as $15 each, or the same set of 10 for just $110. What’s the difference? Permission to use the melodies in your videos. Because Lamb originally created the disks for entertainment purposes and not as buyout music for video editors, it is possible to buy a disk without receiving the proper permissions to use the songs in your productions. The increased price of the set made available through Royalty Free Music at www.royaltyfree.com includes the proper forms and papers that grant the buyer the right to use the music in a video production.

The fact that Lamb did not "design" these for use in video productions impacts the editor in another way as well. Many CD libraries include multiple cuts of each song at different lengths. For instance, a production-designed CD might include a full-length five-minute version of a song as well as 60-second, 30-second, 15-second and 10-second renditions. Tunes cut to these lengths make life a lot easier for video editors. The Gary Lamb package, however, presents each disk in the typical form of a CD that youd listen to for entertainment purposes.



High Quality, Narrow Scope

Producers of buyout music libraries have the reputation of being second rate musicians who use cheap synthesizers. That’s not the case here. Gary Lamb is an excellent musician and a talented composer. Four of Gary’s original compositions have appeared on Billboard Magazine’s Top 10 list in the Adult Alternative category. Gary’s music has been used on broadcast productions of CBS Sports, Good Morning America, Melrose Place and Disney. As you might have expected, the quality of the music on each of the 10 disks is superb.

While the quality of the music is outstanding, we found the scope of its application for the video editor rather narrow. If you are looking for an all-purpose buyout collection, this isn’t it. You won’t find rock, pop, corporate/industrial, country, jazz or any of the other genres common to royalty-free CD libraries for video. Gary Lamb specializes in soft instrumentals. Styles range from "elegant solo piano" to "up tempo percussive instrumentals" and feature "original classical piano/violin duets," "ethnic polyrhythms" and "light pop melodies". If you produce weddings, nature video or if you frequently assemble quaint montages, this collection will provide you with all the music you’ll ever need.

TECH SPECS

Gary Lamb

Music Library (10-Pack)


Total number of CDs 10

Shortest cut 2:27

Longest cut 7:41

Total tracks 100

TEST RESULTS

Strengths

  • Outstanding production quality
  • Unlimited lifetime usage rights

    Weaknesses

  • Narrow in scope
  • Not designed with video in mind

    Summary

  • An excellent choice for wedding videographers. Others may want more variety.
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